React.Pivot.Respond. It's time to think.
The COVID-19 pandemic caught most of us off-guard. We had to react, forced to change to pivot quickly. Now we have more information, and time has separated us from reaction mode, it’s time to look at the landscape and begin to plan responses. Start today by identifying what you think the most likely scenarios will be as we move forward. 3-months, 6-months, 9-months, 12-months, and two years. Perform a SWOT analysis for each period so you can plan a response should this come true. By identifying and validating what you believe will happen, you will be more open to thinking through other potential scenarios. With everyone working at home and communicating on the internet, there are a plethora of scenario opinions available from a global scale to industry-specific and hyper-local. The sharing of knowledge, information, and even opinions are vital right now as none of us have the answers. Seek out the information, talk with other business owners, listen to the potential scenarios. Though you may not believe them to be accurate, perform a forward-thinking SWOT analysis for them regardless. With each scenario, there will be indicators to help you see what direction the crisis is moving, identify these markers, so when you see them; you will know which plan to follow. It sounds like much work, but this is why you are a business leader. You have to do this for yourself and your business as each one of us is different. If you have a leadership team, engage them in the process. The more brains in the game, the stronger the game plans you will create. As time marches on and we find our way through this, the scenarios you worked through may not come to pass as predicted. Regardless, you will have plans that will lead you to adjust and respond as opposed to reacting; and ultimately, you will win.